A freshman Senate class was sworn in Jan. 3, bringing diverse skills and experience – not to mention agendas – to the legislative body. Whether the 14 newest senators help break partisan gridlock, or refuse to work across the aisle, will be the test for the 113th Congress.Twelve were elected on Nov. 6, including three Republicans, eight Democrats, and an independent. In addition, a Republican and a Democrat were appointed to vacant seats after the election. Here is a look at the 14 and what they bring to the Senate:
Across the US Midwest, homeowners are restoring their yards and former farmland to the native prairie that existed in pre-settlement days. The benefits can be substantial — the need for less water and no fertilizer, and an ecosystem that supports wildlife.